Last November 26, Ateneo-SUGPAT attended the first ever Filipino Youth Volunteers Convention as a speaker for the Social Innovation & Community Development break-out session at the SMX Aura Convention Center, Manila.
SUGPAT was represented by its program director, Kiko Miranda, who shared the stage alongside Mr. Prim Paypon, founder of The Dream Project.
During his break-out session, Miranda shared three ‘powers’ that he realized in the three years of working on and developing the SUGPAT program: The Power of Empathy, the Power of Idea, and the Power of the Collective.
He added further that the idea of SUGPAT sprang from continuing to engage and listen to the stories of the out-of-school youth.
“We saw that given meaningful experiences and opportunities, the OSYs helped us come up with this idea of an alternative school that will not only address their need for education but will also help them become better creative peace-builders in the future,” he said at this benefit event for UNICEF Philippines.
This was among 9 breakout sessions with 23 speakers from different youth and youth-serving organizations.
The convention was a collaboration of student organizations from De La Salle University – Manila, University of Sto. Tomas, University of the Philippines – Diliman, University of the Philippines – Manila, Ateneo de Manila University, and Polytechnic University of the Philippines.
Aiming to inspire and encourage current and aspiring volunteers, the whole day convention celebrated volunteerism and linked young volunteers to a wide array of organizations fighting for various advocacies.
Included were Teach for the Philippines, Ayala Foundation, Girls Will Code, Madaris Volunteers, Y-PEER Pilipinas, Ideas Positive, Galing Pook Foundation, and Angat Kabataan, among many others.
Apart from the breakout sessions, there was also a plenary with UNICEF Philippines HIV Specialist Emee Valdehuesa, Ayala Foundation President Ruel Maranan, National Youth Commissioner James Buenaventura, and Filipino Youth Volunteer Convention Chairperson Billie Aranzanso.
SUGPAT also set-up a booth for the Volunteer Fair where delegates signed up for volunteer programs in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The event culminated with a concert by Munimuni, and Nathan & Mercury.